Budapest, Hungary

The Power of the Visual: Creative Documentary and Human Rights

when 8 July 2024 - 13 July 2024
language English
duration 1 week
credits 1 EC
fee EUR 360

The course invites artists, students, and scholars in humanities and social sciences who are engaged in the production, distribution, and analysis of documentary visual imagery and who recognize film as an important communication medium. The intense 6-day program aims at advancing individual participants’ projects with the help of masterclasses and tutoring sessions run by a network of academics and film practitioners. The course also sets to raise awareness of documentary films as cultural and social capital and an important change-making tool. It was developed collaboratively by faculty from six academic institutions working in the field of film and visual arts who bring their best teaching practices to the CEU Budapest summer school. The course is a safe space to create, learn, and obtain competent feedback on the documentary projects in the making as well as to join a community of engaged scholars and documentary practitioners.

The course is structured as a sequence of interdisciplinary workshops, seminars, and masterclasses addressing issues of documentary ethics, social impact, community engagement, multi-media genres, memory politics, and representation within the field of cultural studies. In addition to workshops, participants work in small groups and have individual consultations with the course tutors. The course also includes a visit to Blinken OSA Archives (a repository of important collections on the Cold War and international human rights, and a laboratory of archival experiments on new ways of assessing, contextualizing, presenting, and making use of archival documents) for exploring the audio-visual holdings and public engagement practices of this heritage institution.

Course leader

Oksana Sarkisova, Blinken OSA Archivum, Central European University, Budapest/Vienna

Nurzhamal Karamoldoeva, TV, Film and Media Arts Department; Center for Civic Engagement, AUCA, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Target group

Applications are invited worldwide from MA and PhD students, artists, and young professionals.

We also accept applications from advanced undergraduate students who have a documentary project in development and demonstrate active engagement and a relevant course of study, making a compelling case in their motivation letter.

Course aim

The course aims to:

Advance individual documentary projects through mentorship and peer critique
Develop critical analytical skills in contextual visual analysis
Acquire knowledge of recent and historical creative documentary productions
Promote the ability to critically and contextually analyze documentary works
Advance visual literacy skills and critical interpretation of moving images
Advance understanding of cinematography, editing, sound design, social impact, and ethical implications in documentary films

Credits info

1 EC
Upon successful completion of the course, a certificate of attendance is also awarded.

Fee info

EUR 360: payable until May 28


The Open Society University Network is offering scholarships on a competitive basis for currently enrolled students and employees of OSUN member institutions. If admitted, fee waivers are available for students of CIVICA institutions.